This post is sponsored by Cookbook Create. When Chris and I were first married, I had very limited cooking experience, nor a database of go-to recipes. I asked my mother to put together some of our family’s recipes together for me one Christmas. She purchased a cute little journal and added on sticky tabs and hand wrote every single recipe for me, along with some fun little notes about them from our family’s history. Cookbook Create is an awesome company that allows you to (just as the name indicates!) create your own cookbook! You add your own recipes, and can upload your own photos, creating something that is sure to become a family treasure. It would have made my mother’s job much easier!I was so excited to have the opportunity to try out Cookbook Create, and have partnered with several other bloggers on a “Cookie Recipe Swap” cookbook. We each contributed recipes to a group collection, and then we were each able to create our own cookbooks from that collection, organizing recipes as we wanted, and adding our own photos to make it more personal. This idea would be amazing for a holiday cookie swap! If you’re hosting one this season, have everyone contribute recipes and you can each make your own cookbooks from them! How fun would that be?
Emmy and I had a fun weekend of holiday baking to put together our original recipes and photos that I was contributing to the collection. Of course, if you are hosting a cookie swap, you could easily snap photos of each of the cookies while you’re there. The individual recipes don’t need photos, but they’re much more fun that way. One of the cookies we made for the collection was a family favorite, peanut butter blossoms, and we added this photo to go along with the recipe.
After we all added our recipes, it was time to create our own cookbooks! For the cover, Cookbook Create has several templates available, or you can use your own photo. I opted to use a picture of my fringed Christmas tree from last year as a background. As you can see above, designing the cover is the first step, and then you simply follow each step until your book design is complete. The process is really simple and prompts you right through easily. I had so much fun choosing festive photos to add to my book.
And when the book arrived, my kids were thrilled to see that I had chosen photos of them as well as each of our family pets to include in our book to make it special. It’s truly full of family favorite recipes as well as meaningful memories. If you look closely below at the cinnamon bar recipe you’ll see what I wrote that makes it special to me.
When the book arrived in the mail I was blown away by how beautiful it was! It’s a professional quality bound book that I put together and virtually created. My kids and I were excited to test out some of the recipes that were new to us from the other bloggers, and decided to start out with “Grandma’s Iced Gingerbread Cookies” that Emily of Rainbow Delicious created. (Just wait until you see ours below… they don’t look quite as lovely! 😉 )Of course, I say “kids” here loosely… Emmy was thrilled to help with the actual mixing and baking…Sawyer told us to let him know when the dough was ready for sampling. This recipe was egg free, so I suppose we could’ve just plopped down with spoons and eaten it straight, right? 😉But alas, buzzkill mom scooped it into a bowl with a lid to refrigerate so we could roll and cut later.After a few hours, we were ready to roll and cut into the special Christmas shapes my kids chose like monkeys, gorillas, wreaths, and Santas. I am pretty sure monkeys and gorillas were “away in the manger,” too, right? Emmy and I began rolling and cutting and before I knew it, the whole family had come together to cut cookies. We are never that perfect Christmas card family, but for this one moment, it felt like it… Christmas music was playing, and we were all happily cutting Christmas gorilla cookies together.Once they went in the oven, I washed dishes and made the frosting while everyone else played Uno until we were ready to decorate. We had our icing from the recipe in the book, and brought out different sugars and gels we had on hand and just had fun. As you can see, we are no professionals.And then there was this gorilla… Emmy wanted to make a bear like the one in The Great Outdoors which my parents showed her a couple weeks ago. (For your reference, if you aren’t familiar with it, it’s got a bald behind and you can see it here.) We were out of bears so she used a gorilla instead and, well, now it looks like a baboon… the Christmas baboon!We have had so much fun flipping through this book, finding new recipes, and visiting the old ones to read what makes them special to us. We’ve loved seeing our home and family on the gorgeous print pages. I made sure that each dog was accounted for in its pages. Oh, and as you can see I chose the butcher block background Cookbook Create has for the pages. I loved how it mimicked our own counters.And since every Christmas, our elf Lolly is part of our family, I couldn’t leave him out.
Next year I would love to plan a cookie swap with my local girlfriends and make a book we can all collaborate on together and add our photos and recipes to; it would be such a wonderful memory to keep forever. I also think that Cookbook Create would be a perfect way to make a cookbook for a bride and groom, or for a bridal shower, even a baby shower. At Valentine’s day it would be fun to make one with all of the recipes you and your special someone enjoy together.
If you are hosting a cookie swap this season, be sure to check out Cookbook Create so you can make your own special cookbook for you and your friends to treasure forever… because we all know the cookies don’t last!
This post was sponsored by Cookbook Create. All photos and opinions are my own; I truly love what this company is all about and hope you check them out!